‘716 Candles’: Honoring lives, creating awareness
Healthy Lincoln County is proud to present "716 Candles," a transformative series of events commemorating International Overdose Awareness Day. Taking place throughout late August 2023, this community-driven project aims to shed light on the human cost of substance misuse and the opioid epidemic while fostering healing, unity, and understanding within the Lincoln County community.
In Lincoln County, Maine, substance use disorder and the overdose epidemic touch nearly every individual, family, and neighborhood. The harsh reality is that loved ones are lost, lives are shattered, and countless individuals are affected by this illness in some way. As a response to this pressing issue, the community is rallying together to make a difference.
A collaborative effort between Healthy Lincoln County, various community members, organizations, and businesses, "716 Candles" comprises a series of thoughtfully curated events aimed at engaging the community and encouraging meaningful conversations. These events intertwine art, music, personal stories, remembrances, expert insights, and healing activities.
All events are free and open to the public, but non-perishable food donations will be accepted at each of the events in support of Lincoln County food pantries.
The public is welcome to join us at the following events:
Lights of Lincoln County - Saturday, Aug. 26, 1:30-4 p.m. at Coastal Rivers Conservation Trust, 3 Round Top Lane, Damariscotta. An inclusive event featuring music, family activities, and resource tables, providing an opportunity for shared experiences and dialogue.
Why You Matter - Sunday, Aug. 27, 2-4 p.m. with an open mic at 2:45 at Cider Hill Farm, 72 Medomak Terrace, Waldoboro. A youth-focused event to express hopes and dreams as the academic year commences, emphasizing the significance of every individual's journey.
International Overdose Awareness Day - Thursday, Aug. 31, 1:30-3:30 p.m. Boothbay Common, Common Drive, Boothbay. An impactful event featuring music, art, remembrance, resource information, and speakers from local and statewide leadership.
Love & Remembrance - Thursday, Aug. 31, 5-6 p.m. The Congregational Church of Boothbay Harbor, 125 Townsend Ave., Boothbay Harbor. A poignant gathering to honor those who have lost their lives to substance use through music, poetry, and spoken words.
Wiscasset Art Walk & Parade of Candles - Thursday, Aug. 31, 5-8 p.m. Wiscasset Village & Sunken Garden, Main St. /Route 1, Wiscasset. A vibrant celebration of art, music, and performance culminating in a Parade of Candles, symbolizing unity and remembrance.
"716 Candles" represents a collective effort that unites individuals, families, professionals, advocates, and organizers, all with a shared commitment to challenge stigma, nurture compassion, and amplify awareness of substance use and the opioid epidemic.
Since 2001, International Overdose Awareness Day, observed on Aug. 31 each year, has been a global initiative to raise awareness about overdoses, combat the stigma associated with drug-related deaths, and honor the memory of those who have been lost.
For more information about "716 Candles" and the events, visit http://716candlesproject.com/.